Modeling of Velocity and Hydraulic Gradient in Non-Darcian Flows Using the Concept of Conformable Fractional Derivatives

Document Type : Research Paper


1 Department of Irrigation and Reclamation Engineering, Faculty of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, University College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran, P. O. Box 4111, Karaj, 31587-77871, Iran.

2 Associate Professor, Department of Irrigation and Reclamation Engineering, University College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of Tehran, P. O. Box 4111, Karaj, 31587-77871, Iran

3 Associate Professor, Soil Science Department, College of Agriculture, Yasouj University, P.O.BOX: 353, Yasouj, 75918-74831, Iran.


The increase of flow velocity and Reynolds number in coarse porous media and the subsequent violation of Darcy's law, force to analyze the flow based on nonlinear relations of hydraulic slope and flow velocity. So, it is necessary to study nonlinear relationships more accurately. The purpose of this study was to investigate the performance of fractional-order model and the effect of conformable derivatives on improving the relationship between flow velocity and hydraulic gradient. Therefore, by determining the acceptable range for the fractional-order model, a nonlinear model based on conformable derivatives of the Izbash equation for the fully developed turbulent flow was presented and solved analytically and the parameters of the proposed model were determined using laboratory data analysis. The optimal values of the model parameters including coefficient a and the order of fractional derivative α, which can be varied in the range of (0-2), were calculated for each laboratory data set. The results were compared with the experimental data and the analytical solution of Izbash equation and a good agreement was found to the non-Darcian flow laboratory data. Moreover, using dimensional analysis method, Reynolds number was introduced as an effective factor on α coefficient and a suitable relationship was observed between the order of fractional derivative α and Reynolds number indicating the hydraulic concept of fractional-order model. According to the present study, the fractional order α is not only a fitting coefficient, but it represents a physical concept.


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